‘Barracuda’ is a new high speed Interceptor / Patrol vessel for military and law enforcement applications designed and built by Safehaven Marine, who manufacture a range of highly successful pilot boats, patrol vessels, S.A.R. craft and research catamarans from their factory in Youghal Co Cork. Established in 1997 and employing up to 30 people Safehaven have become world leaders in their niche markets and have produced over 100 commercial vessels exported to over 14 countries worldwide. Barracuda has been under development for nearly 2 years and will be marketed to NATO navy’s and law enforcement agencies around the world, alongside its existing range of vessels.
Typical operational roles for Barracuda would include patrol, surveillance and protection of harbour installations and offshore anchorages, as well as high speed pursuit and apprehend of those engaged in illegal and threatening waterborne activities. An array of both lethal and non lethal weapons can be carried aboard Barracuda. The vessel can be deployed by helicopter utilizing its in-built lifting points on deck and transported easily by ship or road. Propulsion is by either conventional sterngear or waterjets, powered by a pair of 575hp diesel engines Barracuda can reach speeds of 40kts+
The innovative design of the vessel utilizes various stealth technology’s to produce a lower RCS (radar cross section), allowing it to operate with greatly reduced degree of visibility to an adversary’s radar. The design uses an innovative solution to weapon deployment. Various different types of both lethal and non-lethal weapons, including a remote control gyroscopically stabilised machine gun can be fitted to Barracuda. In Barracuda the weapons are cleverly concealed below decks in the f/wd section of the superstructure, and are raised up to above deck level for deployment through large watertight carbon fibre hatches built into the f/wd cabins roof section. In this way when the vessel is in engaged in surveillance or patrol, the weapons are concealed and the vessels RCS signature is reduced. When the vessel is engaged in pursuit or apprehend modes, the weapons are raised for deployment. The superstructure and hull design utilises flat plane principles to its surfaces in its f/wd projections to deflect radar beams away from source, which together with specialized construction and outfitting combine to produce a vessel with a high level of stealth
The vessel is constructed from advanced lightweight FRP cored composites, with extensive use of carbon fibre in its outfitting. The hull’s innovative wave piercing design allows high speeds to be maintained in rough conditions increasing the crews endurance and provides exceptionally high levels of seakeeping abilities on all course, very much as one would expect from a builder renowned for its highly seaworthy pilot and S.A.R. vessels, which the spectacular photos of her during recent trials in rough weather testify too.
A range of high tech navigation and surveillance equipment is fitted to the vessel, and ballistic protection can be incorporated to protect the crew.
Barracuda will be produced alongside Safehavens highly successful existing range of pilot, SAR vessels and patrol boats.